President Jamie McCourt

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The latest from the McCourt divorce:

Jamie McCourt considered whether to parlay her high-profile position
with the Dodgers into the pursuit of political offices, including
president of the United States, according to documents filed by her
estranged husband in the couple’s divorce proceedings . . . In a December 2008 e-mail, Dodgers executive Charles Steinberg
presented her with “Project Jamie,” a seven-page action plan that
included this line: “Goal: Be Elected President of the United States.”

The dynamic in which the arrogant, idle rich treat political office as one of many jewels in the social crown and expect that it can be obtained by virtue of celebrity and networking alone is an old one, so there’s no sense in attacking it with gusto here. What I’m struck by is the fact that Ms. McCourt apparently had highly paid executives on the Dodgers payroll whose job, apparently, was to direct such vanity projects.

I know this divorce stinks for Dodgers fans, but look on the bright side: without it we wouldn’t be getting such an educational glimpse into the waste and extravagance afoot in the owners’ box of a major league baseball team.  While we may need to hold our noses while observing it, perhaps the McCourts’ example will prove useful the next time one of these plutocrats pleads poverty and tries to shake down city hall for something.

Albert Pujols passes Mark McGwire with 584th career home run

CLEVELAND, OH - AUGUST 11: Albert Pujols #5 of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim runs out a double during the ninth inning against the Cleveland Indians at Progressive Field on August 11, 2016 in Cleveland, Ohio. The Indians defeated the Angels 14-3. (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)
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Angels DH Albert Pujols passed Mark McGwire for sole possession of 10th place on baseball’s all-time home run leaderboard, slugging his 584th career home run in the first inning of Wednesday night’s game against the Blue Jays.

Mike Trout had already slugged a solo home run off of Jays starter Marco Estrada to bring Pujols to the dish. Pujols jumped on an 0-1 cut fastball, sending it out to left-center field, clearing the fence by a few feet.

Pujols, who finished 4-for-4 with the homer and an RBI double, is batting .257/.321/.441 with 24 home runs and 99 RBI on the year. His next target on the home run leaderboard is Frank Robinson at 586.

Zach Britton allowed an earned run for the first time since April 30

BALTIMORE, MD - AUGUST 22:  Zach Britton #53 of the Baltimore Orioles pitches for his 38th save in the ninth inning during a baseball game against the the Washington Nationals at Oriole Park at Camden Yards on August 22, 2016 in Baltimore, Maryland.  The Oriole won 4-3.  (Photo by Mitchell Layton/Getty Images)
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Orioles closer Zach Britton had appeared in a major league record 43 consecutive games without allowing an earned run, spanning May 5 to August 22. That streak came to an end on Wednesday evening against the Nationals.

The Orioles entered the bottom of the ninth inning holding a 10-3 lead, but reliever Parker Bridwell immediately found himself in hot water. He yielded back-to-back singles to Danny Espinosa and Clint Robinson. He was able to strike out Trea Turner, but walked Jayson Werth to load the bases. Daniel Murphy then crushed his first career grand slam to make it a 10-7 game. That prompted manager Buck Showalter to bring in Britton.

Britton, too, was knocked around. He served up a single to Bryce Harper, followed by a double to Anthony Rendon that scored Harper, pushing the score to 10-8 and ending Britton’s streak. Wilson Ramos reached on a fielder’s choice back to Britton, but the lefty finally finished the game by getting Ryan Zimmerman to ground into a game-ending 4-6-3 double play.

Britton now holds a nice 0.69 ERA with 38 saves and a 61/16 K/BB ratio in 52 innings of work this season.